Reducing IM injection pain in children
Introduction: Pediatric patients in the emergency department often require intramuscular injection procedures, which may lead to pain, fear, and anxiety. The purpose of this study was to test a novel nonpharmacological intervention to reduce needle-related pain in the pediatric emergency department.
Methods: The study was conducted as a parallel-group, randomized controlled design. The study population consisted of 159 children aged 7 to 10 years cared for in the emergency department who received an intramuscular injection of ampicillin/sulbactam. The children were randomly assigned to Palm Stimulator, ShotBlocker, or control groups. The children’s preprocedure fear levels were evaluated using the Children’s Fear Scale, and their perceived pain levels during the procedure were evaluated using the Faces Pain Scale-Revised and Visual Analog Scale. Parents and observers also completed the pain level scores.
Results: According to all raters (child, parent, and observer), the Palm Stimulator group had the lowest mean Faces Pain Scale-Revised score averages (P < .001). The Visual Analog Scale score averages of the children in the Palm Stimulator group (Visual Analog Scale: M = 27.94, standard deviation = 19.13) were statistically significantly lower than the ShotBlocker (Visual Analog Scale: M = 46.07, standard deviation = 24.96) and control group (Visual Analog Scale: M = 53.43, standard deviation = 29.01) score averages (F = 14.94, η2 = 0.16, P = .001).
Discussion: The results of this study support the effectiveness of the Palm Stimulator to reduce perceived pain in children during intramuscular injection administration in the pediatric emergency department.
Zengin M, Yayan EH. A Comparison of Two Different Tactile Stimulus Methods on Reducing Pain of Children During Intramuscular Injection: A Randomized Controlled Study. J Emerg Nurs. 2021 Dec 21:S0099-1767(21)00284-1. doi: 10.1016/j.jen.2021.10.006. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34952709.